Concerning the problem with Us: This site became an anthropology site roughly three years back.
At that time, we entered into regular consultation with Future Anthropologists Huddled in Caves, a despondent group of credentialed scholars who report to us from the years which lie beyond the cataclysmic global event they refer to as Mister Trump's War.
Under the tutelage of these experts, we've tried to explain the reasons for our badly failed national discourse.
Tomorrow, we'll visit the Nordic behaviors once described by Ahman ibn Fadlan. (For Slate's recent description, click here.) We'll flavor our discussion with cross-reference to old Inka customs. Also, we'll let Professor Gates talk about Muslim-on-Muslim enslavement as practiced by African rulers.
For today, we offer two points of elucidation:
Why in the world would he say such things?: Almost surely, Donald J. Trump is some form of a "sociopath."
As far as we know, that isn't his fault. But almost surely, it is what he is.
Presumably, he's saying the things, and giving voice to the experiences (or lack of same), which stem from that state of affairs. We'll suggest you ask Dr. Bandy X. Lee, who the "press corps" decided to silence.
Presumably, Donald J. Trump is badly impaired. The larger question would be this:
Why is our utterly hapless upper-end press corps still so freaking surprised?
A few years back, the press corps entered a tacit agreement. Under this agreement, they've refused to discuss the obvious possibility that Trump is psychiatrically impaired in some major way.
They've all agreed that the situation mustn't be directly discussed. Instead, they are constantly feigning surprise at the things he says and does.
It's Groundhog Day in Casablanca. They're shocked, shocked every time out!
More on the pleasures of looting: Earlier this week, we marveled at the astounding rumination on the rewards of looting published by National Public Radio.
Over at The Atlantic, Graeme Wood has actually read the book in question—the apparently ludicrous In Defense of Looting: A Riotous History of Uncivil Action. Drawing on his international reporting experience, Woods tears the apparently ludicrous book to shreds, offering such perspectives as this:
WOOD (9/2/20): I am also from recent-immigrant stock. [Author Vicki] Osterweil euphemizes looting as “proletarian shopping,” and no one from a place that has recently experienced this phenomenon can take seriously her assurance that it can happen justly and bloodlessly. When I think of riots and smashed storefronts, I think of Kristallnacht. I think of American businesses built by penniless immigrants who preferred to forfeit their vacations and weekends for 30 years rather than see their children suffer as they did; I think of these businesses ransacked in 30 minutes and left in ruins. Osterweil at least has the psychology right when she says that looting can be “joyous and liberatory.” I have never seen a sullen looter, but I have seen plenty of shop owners crying next to the smoking remains of their children’s future.We recommend Wood's essay. Mainly, though, the question remains:
What does it mean when NPR commissions such a ludicrous interview piece by a kid two years out of college? What editor read that youngster's essay and thought it should be published?
Our nation is crashing to the ground beneath our remarkable lack of mental and moral ability. Our press corps can't see who Donald Trump is, or at least isn't willing to say what it knows or presumes.
Meanwhile, our allegedly brightest mainstream press organs keep publishing claptrap dreamed by kids just out of their swaddling clothes.
It's hard to get a whole lot dumber, or more faux, than our "press corps" routinely is. For the record, we're discussing the way we behave Over Here. We aren't discussing the ways of The Others, though they've crashed and burned too.
Why would Donald Trump say such things? To us, the most likely answer seems to be blindingly obvious.
The larger, much more relevant question concerns the behavior of the people within our failing elites. Simply put, we just don't seem to have what it takes. This has been true for years.